Paparazzi promise to show restraint – but for how long?
Delayed honeymoon unlikely to lessen fevered interest in Duke and Duchess
Monday 02 May 2011
As the new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge prepare to return to what passes for normal life tomorrow after spending a quiet weekend in an undisclosed location, the paparazzi are also waiting for a return to business as usual.
It won't happen immediately, according to Glenn Gratton, founder of the London-based agency Matrix, who said his company would be respecting the couple's call for privacy. "At the moment they have asked for privacy and as an agency we will respect that," Mr Gratton said yesterday. "As much as there is a demand worldwide, we will leave them alone for a period of time."
Photographic agencies and paparazzi photographers can expect a big payout for any photos of the pair. One photograph of Kate Middleton taken shortly after the engagement was announced reportedly fetched more than £50,000.
"We won't hunt them down, that's not how we work, but obviously there is a demand," said Mr Gratton. "You are going to get a lot of interest from magazines if she gains weight, loses weight, if she becomes a fashionista and that sort of thing."
It's not just the Duchess of Cambridge who should expect to find a throng of eager photographers following her wherever she goes, according to Mr Gratton. "It also looks as though Kate's sister Pippa is getting a lot of attention as well, and they will have greater access to her."
From the moment the first photograph of Prince William and Kate Middleton was taken, and published in a British newspaper, the couple have been the subject of intense scrutiny by gossip magazines and tabloids alike.
This is fuelled by massive public interest – a staggering two billion people worldwide were thought to have tuned in to watch the couple exchange vows. In Britain, more than 24 million people watched the royal wedding on terrestrial television, and nearly 23 million Americans rose at around 6am on Friday to watch the proceedings live.
Speaking on Radio 4 on Friday evening, The Sun's royal photographer, Arthur Edwards, said Prince William has gone to great lengths to ensure the couple's privacy. "William is quite a private person and will use the courts if necessary," he said. "I don't think there is any point in trying to get honey- moon pictures. I think you are not going to get any pictures anyway – you'll spend a lot of money and get nothing."
After the excitement of the couple's wedding day, which was said to have left the couple "buzzing with happiness", the new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge spent the weekend at an undisclosed destination in Britain, with most of the speculation centring on the Queen's home at Sandringham in Norfolk. Then on Tuesday the Duke is due to return to his job as an RAF search and rescue helicopter pilot.
The Caribbean remains the bookies' favourite for the couple's honeymoon – when it eventually happens – at odds of 15-8 on. Bequia and Necker Island both have the benefit of being easily secured, as does Mustique, where Kate's parents are frequent visitors.
Lizard Island, off the coast of Queensland, Australia, has also emerged as a contender. Kenya's odds have slipped, as have Jordan's. One theory is that the couple had lined up Jordan, but mounting security fears amid Arab unrest forced a late rethink.
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